What does Romans 12:2 mean?
I reflected on this verse as I took the first sip of my coffee. Coffee can’t be praised enough. My morning cup of coffee separates me from my alter-ego, the one with fangs and green hair. Not a pretty picture, I realize, but an accurate depiction of a caffeine-free morning.
My coffee ritual is the same: same mug, the same brand of coffee, same granules of sugar, few drops of milk, stir, sip slowly, exhale deeply in relief! When the milk is replaced by a non-dairy creamer (during Coptic fast dairy is eliminated), my enjoyment is affected, but my fangs still retreat in defeat. And so, rain or shine, milk or not, coffee remains a constant and consistently the same.
The day coffee changed
This morning, to expedite the transformation ritual, I poured my magical concoction into a “to-go” thermos-type mug.
Same ingredients, same ratios.
I took the first sip while driving in my car. Shock and disbelief!
It simply did not taste the same. In fact, my fangs grew longer, the hair became greener, and a third arm was trying to sprout from my left shoulder.
How could the simple change in vessels alter my beverage from sweet nectar to the wicked witch’s brew?
The metal interacts differently with the coffee than the ceramic does.
Like I do.
I interact differently whether I am near the vine or grafted onto it. Same person; different life.
That is the meaning of Romans 12:2. Baptism transformed us from fallen individuals to renewed children of Christ. Why do we ever stray away from the source of our transformation and conform to the world? Why do we take on the attributes of the world? When we do, like my coffee, we are not true to ourselves. Therefore, the meaning of Romans 12:2 is to remain true to our identities as Christians. We live in the world, but we are not of the world.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is, his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2.
Similar posts you might enjoy: Father God, I wonder.
Coptic Readings about this topic: Be Transformed – HG Bishop Makarios
Recommended children’s book on Baptism and the Holy Spirit: Philo and the SuperHolies
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